We’ve slipped on our gumboots and armed ourselves with a map and compass! My kids and I have recently discovered Geocaching!
What is it you ask? Because it sounds like professional mining exploration and… plain hard work :P
Geocaching is a real life, on-going treasure hunt that is happening all around the world and in your local park right now. It’s so much fun!
Basically, you download an app, sign up, turn on your location service, then you look for geocaches that are hidden in your area (or where ever you are in the world).
We were delighted to discover that there were hundreds (maybe thousands?) of geocaches hidden around our city, and at least 1 hidden in every park we visit frequently. Many are linked together with a theme, or a puzzle to solve. It’s kind of cool to know that there is a whole active community out there, making and leaving little treasure hunts for others to find.
Once you find a geocache using the coordinates and clues, you’re supposed to open up the cache, sign a log sheet (to prove that you found it) then use the app to log that you’ve found it and leave a message. Sometimes the caches are a little plastic container, a small box, or even a mint tint. My boys like to leave a little toy/surprise for the next person, usually the tiny head from a Lego man, which is their “signature”.
What I love most about this kind of treasure hunting is… that while we’re in a park, I can just log on and find out whether there is a geocache in the area. Then I can get my kids to “run off and try to look for it”. It occupies them for ages. It also gives us a great reason to visit new parks. And we are all thrilled beyond belief when we find one.
(However, a word of warning, it can get a bit addictive and frustrating at times! See how the container in the picture above has been carefuly camouflaged with tree bark?!)